a woman speaking to a group of about 6 people in a museum gallery


Register for your private tour here. If you have changes to a confirmed tour please follow the process outlined in your confirmation letter.

Tour Types and Fees

All tours last 45 minutes, are led by experienced museum guides, and encourage an informal exchange of ideas.

Private Tours

• Open to college students and adult groups
• $150 tour fee + admission
• Requires a reservation
• Can be scheduled any time during museum hours
• Minimum† of 10, maximum of 25 participants

Register your private tour here.

† If your group has special needs that require a smaller group size, please contact or 212.849.8351.

Public Tours

• Open to the general public.
Weekdays: Tours begin at 11:30 a.m. on the first floor and 1:30 p.m on the third floor
Weekends*: Tours begin at 1:00 p.m. on the first floor and 3:00 p.m. on the third floor
• Free with admission
• No reservation required
• Maximum of 25 participants†
• If you would like to learn more, please call our Visitor Experience line, 212.849.2950

* We will not be offering public tours on Saturday, October 10, 2015 or Sunday, October 11, 2015.

† Groups exceeding 10 participants are encouraged to book a separate Private Group Tour.

Self-Guided Tours

• Open to private and college groups that want to explore the museum’s galleries on their own.
• Advance reservations are required for all groups of 10 or more
• Reservations must be made at least two weeks in advance
• Outside lecturers are not permitted

Register your self-guided tour here.

Current Tour Offerings

How Posters Work
On view from May 8, 2015 to November 15, 2015

How Posters Work shows how dozens of different designers—from prominent pioneers like Herbert Matter, Paul Rand, Philippe Apeloig and M/M (Paris), to lesser-known makers—have mobilized principles of composition, perception and storytelling to convey ideas and construct experiences.

Featuring more than 125 posters from Cooper Hewitt’s permanent collection, the exhibition demonstrates how some of the world’s most creative designers have employed design principles to produce powerful acts of visual communication.

The exhibition is organized into 14 subsections: focus the eye, overwhelm the eye, use text as image, overlap, cut and paste, assault the surface, simplify, tell a story, amplify, double the meaning, manipulate scale, activate the diagonal, make eye contact and make a system.

Making Design: Permanent Collection
On view: Ongoing

Making Design is devoted to showcasing Cooper Hewitt’s extensive collection—over 210,000 objects spanning thirty centuries. Bringing together some 360 objects, including furniture, lighting fixtures, tableware, clothing, jewelry, books, and posters, the exhibition provides an overview of five key elements of design: line, form, texture, pattern, and color (red, for this initial installation).

Our emphasis is on people, purpose, and making. Examine the role that models play in helping architects, designers, and clients consider variations of an idea.

Provocations: The Architecture and Design of Heatherwick Studio
On view June 24, 2015 through January 3, 2016

Provocations is the first museum exhibition to introduce the imaginative work of British designer Thomas Heatherwick and his London-based studio to an American audience. Heatherwick is known for his unique design concepts ranging from products, infrastructure and temporary structures, to large-scale architecture projects around the world.


How Posters Work is made possible by major support from
Adobe Foundation

Additional funding is provided by the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York.

Exhibitions of the permanent collection are made possible by major support from Nancy Marks.

Additional support is provided by Elizabeth and Lee Ainslie and the Henry Luce Foundation.

Tours FAQ

How far in advance do I have to register?
At least 6 weeks. Reservations are accepted 7 days a week during museum hours.

What information do I need to have when registering?
Group leader’s name, mailing address, and contact information, as well as the number and type of participants (max. 25 per group)

When is payment due?
At least 4 weeks before your scheduled visit. Your reservation is not confirmed until all fees are paid.

What happens after I submit my reservation request?
Due to the high volume of tour inquiries your request will be reviewed within 7 business days, and a confirmation e-mail will be sent noting program date and start time.

Can my group stay in the museum after my guided visit?
Yes. participants will receive an entrance ticket and may come and go freely for the rest of the day.

Where do I check in?
Arrive 10 minutes before your scheduled start time to check-in (we cannot attend to you if you arrive sooner), and enter the museum on 91st Street between 5th and Madison Avenues. Your group leader can pick up your tickets from the  admissions desk and the guide assigned to your program will greet you there.

What if we’re late?
If your group is late, your program will be shortened accordingly and will finish at the originally designated end time. Groups that arrive more than 30 minutes late cannot be accommodated

What if I need to cancel my tour?
All cancellations must be received in writing at least 2 weeks prior to the scheduled visit. Please review our full cancellation policy on your confirmation letter and contact Group Tours at or 212.849.8351 with any questions. Cancellation and other processing fees may apply

Where can a bus/van park?
Buses/vans may drop off and pick up groups outside the main museum entrance (2 E. 91st Street). While waiting, buses can remain on 5th Avenue or seek alternative locations

What if my group requires special accommodations?
On your reservation request, please indicate special accommodations under “Additional Information.”

Can I lead my own tour in the galleries?
No outside lecture/tours guides permitted, with the exception of College/University professor lead tours.

Do you conduct tours in other languages?
At this time, all tours are conducted in English.